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Our Staff

Ryan Adesnik

Senior Associate Vice President, Government Affairs

(650) 725-3322
[email protected]

Ryan Adesnik manages the university’s government affairs efforts at the federal, state and local level. Adesnik first came to Stanford in March 2003 to launch a government relations office at the School of Medicine, where he designed a program to further the school’s research and policy goals in Washington, D.C., and in Sacramento.

Adesnik joined Stanford from the Carmen Group, Inc. of Washington, D.C., a firm that represents corporations, teaching hospitals, private universities, nonprofit philanthropies and others before the federal government. He served as vice president of the organization and provided legislative counsel, political strategy and issue-oriented research. Previously, he held the position of senior legislative aide to Rep. Benjamin A. Gilman of New York, during Mr. Gilman’s tenure as Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

Adesnik hold a Bachelors of Business Administration in Finance from Emory University and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Miami School of Law.

Jean McCown

Associate Vice President, Government Affairs
(650) 725-3329
[email protected]

Jean McCown focuses on Stanford’s government and community affairs efforts and initiatives at the city, county and state level. She maintains relationships with community-based organizations, government officials, local businesses and citizens to support effective communication and dialogue within the Stanford community and between Stanford and its neighbors.

McCown was a member of the Palo Alto City Council from 1990 to 1998 and served as mayor in 1993. She previously served on the Palo Alto Planning Commission and on regional transportation committees including the CalTrain Joint Powers Board and the Metropolitan Transportation Commission. Before coming to Stanford in 2004, McCown was a partner at the law firm of Ritchey Fisher Whitman & Klein, where she focused on land use, environmental and real estate matters.

McCown serves on the boards of the Greenbelt Alliance and the Palo Alto Housing Corporation. She received the John Gardner Leadership Award in 1994 and the Athena Award in 2004. McCown received a Bachelor of Arts degree in History from the University of Michigan, a Masters degree in History from the University of Wisconsin and a Juris Doctorate from the University of California, Boalt Hall.

Megan Arleth

Assistant Vice President, Federal Relations
(202) 760-3182
[email protected]

Megan Arleth supports Stanford’s federal government affairs efforts and plays a leading role in developing and advancing the university’s policy priorities with Congress and the Executive Branch agencies. She also assists with the day-to-day management and coordination of the university’s activities and relationships with federal policymakers. She is based in Washington, DC.

Prior to joining Stanford, Arleth was the Director of Public Issues for the Consortium on Financing Higher Education, where she monitored federal policy activity on a wide range of issues that impact private colleges and universities. She also previously worked in the federal relations offices at Rutgers and Harvard.

Arleth holds a BA degree in Political Science and Journalism from Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey and a Masters degree in Higher Education from the University of Pennsylvania.

Lucy Wicks

Assistant Vice President, Government Affairs and Liaison to the Office of Community Engagement

(650) 725-3339
[email protected]

Lucy Wicks acts as a liaison between Stanford University and government officials, community-based organizations, businesses and individuals.  Through this position she provides the community with information about the University and its resources. These relationships also enable Wicks to inform and advise the University about the needs and interests of the community and of cities.

Previous to joining Stanford, Wicks worked as the Livable Communities Coordinator in the Office of Alameda County Supervisor Nate Miley, where she led a community-wide strategic planning process aimed at improving the livability of the area. She also worked in the areas of land use, transportation and public health policy. 

Erika Bustamante

Assistant Vice President, State Government Affairs
(650) 725-3324
[email protected]

Erika Bustamante assists with the day-to-day management and coordination of the university’s activities and relationships with federal and state governmental bodies related to regulatory and legislative issues impacting the university’s mission. Previous to joining Stanford, Bustamante worked in the capacity of Legislative Director for Assembly Member Luis Alejo. She is also a former California Science and Technology Policy Fellow.

Bustamante holds a BS in Molecular, Cell, and Developmental Biology from UCLA and a Ph.D. in Developmental Biology from Stanford University.

Shweta Bhatnagar

 Director, Government Affairs
(650) 723-4708
[email protected]

Shweta Bhatnagar supports government and community affairs efforts on behalf of the University. She maintains strong relationships with community-based organizations, government officials, businesses and neighborhood associations to support the University’s priorities and activities – including land use and construction projects and regional transportation initiatives and policies.

She is currently a Commissioner on the San Mateo County Commission on the Status of Women, a member of the Palo Alto Chamber of Commerce, and a member of the Advisory Board for the San Mateo and Redwood City Chamber of Commerce Leadership Program.

Prior to joining Stanford, Bhatnagar was the Government and Community Relations Manager at the San Mateo County Transit District, representing SamTrans, Caltrain and the San Mateo County Transportation Authority.

Bhatnagar holds a BA degree in Political Science and Economics from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and a Masters in Public Administration from George Washington University.